Verse > Anthologies > Fuess and Stearns, eds. > The Little Book of Society Verse
Fuess and Stearns, comps.  The Little Book of Society Verse.  1922.
To My Grandmother
By Frederick Locker-Lampson
(Suggested by a Picture by Mr. Romney)

THIS relative of mine,
Was she seventy-and-nine
  When she died?
By the canvas may be seen
How she looked at seventeen,        5
  As a bride.
Beneath a summer tree,
Her maiden reverie
  Has a charm;
Her ringlets are in taste;        10
What an arm!… what a waist
  For an arm!
With her bridal-wreath, bouquet,
Lace farthingale, and gay
  Falbala,        15
Were Romney’s limning true,
What a lucky dog were you,
Her lips are sweet as love;
They are parting! Do they move?        20
  Are they dumb?
Her eyes are blue, and beam
Beseechingly, and seem
  To say “Come!”
What funny fancy slips        25
From atween these cherry lips?
  Whisper me,
Sweet sorceress in paint,
What canon says I may n’t
  Marry thee?        30
That good-for-nothing Time
Has a confidence sublime!
  When I first
Saw this lady, in my youth,
Her winters had, forsooth,        35
  Done their worst.
Her locks, as white as snow,
Once shamed the swarthy crow:
That fowl’s avenging sprite        40
Set his cruel foot for spite
  Near her eye.
Her rounded form was lean,
And her silk was bombazine:
  Well I wot        45
With her needles would she sit,
And for hours would she knit,—
  Would she not?
Ah, perishable clay,
Her charms had dropt away        50
  One by one:
But if she heaved a sigh
With a burthen, it was, “Thy
  Will be done.”
In travail, as in tears,        55
With the fardel of her years
In mercy she was borne
Where the weary and the worn
  Are at rest.        60
O, if you now are there,
And sweet as once you were,
This nether world agrees
’T will all the better please        65

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